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Unlock doors with your cellphone

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http://www.viddler.com/player/3c2d32b6/

Ever lose your hotel keycard? Ever have it get de-magnetized? Both of these are simple to resolve – just go to the front desk – but wouldn’t it be better if you didn’t need to worry so much about the darn things? Nokia is working with VingCard to allow you to use your cellphone to open your hotel door.

As described in the video above, the goal is to allow frequent guests to bypass the front desk for check-in altogether. The guest can register online and get an SMS sent to their phone from which they install a small application. Then they simply go to their hotel room and use their phone to unlock the door! No more lost cards! When the guest checks out, the RFID-enabled lock resets to a new code, making sure that the previous occupant can no longer gain access.

The key part of this technology is the near field communication (NFC) chip, which isn’t largely deployed in cell phones yet. These locks aren’t likely to become commonplace for awhile, but I think it’ll be an extremely popular addition to hotels.

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